One Christmas my father came home from the hunting lease with a burlap sack tied with a red ribbon. There was something wiggling inside that sack! My older sister always wanted a pet Raccoon and thought perhaps my father brought one home for her for Christmas! After she asked him if it was a Raccoon, my father told her that Raccoons don’t make good pets because he had one as a child and it turned mean on him. So we wondered what was wiggling inside the burlap bag. Then we heard this thing squeal as my father placed the burlap sack on the cold shiny asbestos tile floor. When it wiggled its way out of the sack it shot down the hall, slippin’ and a slidin’ trying for all its might to get a foothold, to get away from four squealing little girls.
There it was. A squealing spotted piglet being chased by four little squealing girls. It finally managed to out maneuver us and hightailed for the dark space under mine and my little sister’s bed. All one could see were four little butts sticking out from under a bed. What fun! What excitement! What a wonderful Christmas present.
After we caught this little piglet, and it was so very little, and each sister had an opportunity to hold it and pet it, our father told us how he found it. Apparently its mother had been killed, which was illegal to do so, and her untimely death left behind several little piglets. Each of my father’s hunting partners caught a piglet and each took a baby piglet home to bottle feed until it was old enough to survive on its own. Or at least that’s the version my father chose to tell us.
We bottle fed that little piglet until it was too big for its temporary home inside one of our rabbit pens. After Christmas, our father then gave our little piglet to a family that lived out in the woods. He said it was a better place for the piglet to grow up and we never saw that piglet again. I can only hope it didn’t end up on my plate at some point down the road.
Many years have come and gone since that Christmas, but I will always remember that little Christmas piglet.